sometimes things don't make sense and its like they never will. sometimes things are so crystal clear there is absolutely no other way. this seems to be life these days. my days eb and flow, up and down, right and left... and so does my energy, along with many other intangibles.. and now, story time. stay with me. this past weekend I was equal parts stoked // humbled to be in the presence of the lululemon ambassadors from Winnepeg, Calgary and our very own hometown Kelowna clique at a retreat in the Rocky Mountains.... basically it was a mashup of super cool humans doing super cool things in their communities.
we did some wild things. we did some weird things. we laughed and drank wine while we told stories talked around bon fires. we took selfies by the river, we shared family-style suppers, ran around like hooligans with November Project Cowtown and thecoldestplaceinCanadaknownasWinnipeg, we practiced yoga, we hung out in nature with grizzly bears and it was amazing. we were #hOMeintherockies. we disconnected to reconnect. oh and it snowed..................
changing gears now.
we all have a line. a border, a boundary, a definitive mark in the sand of life. above this line are feelings of compassion, love, happiness, understanding, good vibes, maxed out passion, dedication and determination. below this line are things like hate, lack of communication, confrontation, judgement, misunderstanding, grumpiness, no motivation and shame. we have times in life where we dip below the line a little or a lot and we have times of jumping above the line a little or a lot. But how can we practice stopping the belowtheline moment in its tracks and get ourselves above the line as quickly as possible? What does this really take? these questions and this concept was the focus on Saturday afternoon and woah, wooahhh. straight up, this was emotional. super charged energy filled the room. tears were flying, then everyone is laughing, some were neutral and others angry - because this is what happened: everyone wrote down the most common thought when our life is below the line. this thought was our reality when shit was a total fucking mess. we ripped the page out, crumpled the papers up and threw them in the middle of the circle. the first person gets up, unfolds one of the papers and reads it out loud. the person whose it was stands up and picks another, reads it out. next, reads it out and so on until there aren't anymore left. things that were read -- "I'm not inspiring, I'm not enough, I'm not smart enough, I'm a bad mom, I don't deserve love, I'm a phony." literally every person that stood up in my head I was like "WHAT?! ARE YOU KIDDING? you think that about yourself? you're way too badass//awesome//amazing//inspiring to think those things" it was crazy. but oh so real. and raw. and fucking amazing. because I've learned there is hella strength in vulnerability. so the fact that everyone was bold enough to share was magical in itself.
the bottom line for me from this was the ability tohold space. the skill of active listening. the capacity to simply Be in the presence of all emotions and all feelings of another person. the acceptance of all forms of what that looks like. not thinking about what my response would be. In my experience, this takes time to truly understand what it requires of you. I never really got it. my head would say, "what does that even mean to hold space? that makes no sense. whatever, it's some fluffy thing that isn't a thing" and then I got it, my heart got it. I had all these thoughts about everyone that had their page read out. I sat there in silence and let everyone own their emotions. now that I've been home and digested the weekend, I decided I could drop those thoughts because all I had to do was hold space. it wasn't about me. it was about them feeling like they had a safe place to be vulnerable and open and bare. then it was my turn and it was about me. guess what? they held the space for me to stand up when mine was read aloud and made so so real. there was this silence. almost like they all whispered "I got you. I get you." and that's what it's about. that's it. simply Being right there, listening, engaged with your energy. its been a really awesome week to chew on all of that and share it with my work crew and friends. once you get it. you get it. you don't actually have to do much of anything except be hyper sensitive to being present. it's complicated only if you let it be. remove yourself from their stories and feelings and let them have the floor. let them have the mic.
let people be who they are so you can be who you are.
with one hundred percent love and nothing less,
Ry & Keith
November Project YYC//YWG//YLW being super fkn weird.